The relationship between grandchildren and grandparents is a very special one. In families where the grandparents step in to take care of their grandkids for regular or extended periods, the bond between the two generations can grow even stronger. More than half of mothers who return to work after having a baby rely on the free childcare and support provided by their children's grandparents.
According to research, in the UK around 2 million grandparents have given up work, reduced their hours or taken time off to look after their grandchildren. This growing trend isn't just a UK phenomenon. A rising number of grandparents are becoming the main care providers for their grandchildren in the US, too. There has been a 12.5 per cent increase in the number of grandparents taking on the parenting role and the figure stands at 2.7 million, according to census data.
Many of us will have very fond memories of our grandparents whether they effectively raised us, just filled in for our parents or spent time with us more sparingly. Our grandparents can be great teachers, confidantes and inspirations.
They also have the freedom to treat us and we can gain so much from their experiences. Billy Graham once said, "The greatest legacy one can pass on to one's grandchildren is not money or other material things accumulated in one's life, but rather a legacy of character and faith."
The importance and beauty of this relationship between grandparents and grandchildren is not missed in the Bible. Here are some wonderful verses for grandchildren and grandparents to enjoy.
Genesis 31:55 - Early the next morning Laban kissed his grandchildren and his daughters and blessed them. The he left and returned home.
Psalm 103:17 - But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children.
Psalm 128:5-6 - May the Lord bless you from Zion; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life. May you live to see your children's children - peace be on Israel.
Proverbs 13:22 - A good person leaves an inheritance for their children's children, but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous.
Proverbs 16:31 - Grey hair is a crown of splendour; it is attained in the way of righteousness.
Proverbs 17:6 - Children's children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.
2 Timothy 1:5 - I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.